Ruff Morning.Mature

Ben was up and around a bit earlier than normal. He rushes out his bedroom and tells Karen not to make him breakfast and that he is going to grab something on the way to a new case. The missing teen, Shauna, is in the hand's of the coroner now after he tells Frank of Karen's find last night over the phone around midnight when Karen got back. The mood of the apartment is off. No one is cracking jokes as Ben rushes out the door. Except for Kahlil, he's in a good mood no matter what. But, no one cares to listen.

"What are you working on now?" Karen asks in a sad voice as she sits slumped over in the passenger seat staring at the dashboard.

"I don't even know.  There's five different cases I could work on and I don't feel like doing a damn thing," Ben says depressed.

A moment passes as been turns on the ignition and plays with the radio.

"I wish you were still alive, Karen," he pauses. "I-I mean, this is great. What we can do now. But, I wanted so much more with you. For you." Ben stutters and a bit and continues to press the search button on the radio as if he isn't even paying attention to what's playing on each station.

"Oh, Ben..." Karen winces. "We don't have to talk like this. Don't well on it. Let's keep making use of what we do have. Maybe, someday these are the days you'll miss the most and not just high school."

"What do you mean?" Ben asks.

"I don't know if my ability to be here will last forever. This is barrowed time to me and I'm spending it the best way I know that I can: with you. I know Shauna's case hit home and you want to save everyone you can but the truth is there are plans for us all that we will never understand. I mean, we couldn't help anyone at all if you weren't able to see me and if I wasn't able to stay here, right? Maybe there are things in motion that are bigger than us."

"I know.  I know... Sometimes, I just need to be sad. I'll be fine. I'm glad I can still be with you in some shape and form. I can't imagine it any other way."

"Same," she smiles. "I love you, Ben."

"I love you, too Karen."

As they lean into each other to hug and to kiss the vehicle began to shake from the front end. Ben and Karen look out the front window to see Zeus running through the glass to tackle them. He then continues to bark and lick their faces in the moment of shock and surprise.

"What the hell!? Zeus!?" Ben flies back and leans against the driver side door. Looking at Karen, at the ghost dog, and back to Karen again.

"Why are you here, boy?" Karen laughs.

"I think he's got a crush on you," Ben smiles.

"But, he has never been here. I don't understand," Karen states.

"Well, he is a beagle. He probably picked up on your scent," Ben adds.

"This far from Frick park?"

"The only thing I can think of is maybe his senses are stronger now in spirit. Maybe he knows your sent and it's strong enough for it to lead him here."

"I don't know. But, considering that Shauna's family probably can't see him we probably just made a new friend!" Karen says.

"Oh, I don't know about that," Ben says in a matter of fact tone.

"Can we keep him? Please!?" Karen begs and Zeus turns around and licks Ben's face.

"Don't you think my apartment is crowded enough?"

"Well, think about it. You're not allowed to have pets and I know you wanted one before. No one will have a clue you have a ghost dog!"

"Well, he is pretty cute," he laughs.

"Please? It would be a lot of fun," Karen coos.

"Don't do that.  It's not fair! You're, too cute!"

"I'll take care of him, I promise!" She works him even more.

"Oh, fine! I like him, too."

"Yay! Zeus! You've got a new home, buddy!" Karen hugs Zeus as she pets him on his head.  "Say, 'thank you' to Ben!"

Zeus barks and pants happily.

"Okay. Well, I'm going to get some food while I figure out which case to work on. You watch our new pet while I go to the gas station and get some grub."

"Okay!  Yay Zeus! Yay Zeus!" Karen keeps talking all cute to the dog as they head out.

The End

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